Saint Teresa of Avila was born in 1515 and entered the Carmel of the Incarnation in Avila when she was 20 years old. Within the order, Saint Teresa practiced private, internal prayer and a more austere way of life or the Primitive Rule of Carmel. She longed to create a monastery that would practice these more rigorous ways of living and prayer. After many years of criticism, effort, sacrifice, and illness, she was finally successful. Ultimately, she founded 17 houses of Discalced (meaning barefooted and representing the longed-for austerity of the order) Carmelite sisters and 15 houses of friars. Saint Teresa saw many visions throughout her adult life and insisted that, without Our Lordâs help, nothing could have been accomplished. He was there for her throughout all her efforts.